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“Free Enterprise” contributor talks supporting budding entrepreneurs who are formerly incarcerated

Updated: Jun. 4, 2021 at 1:23 PM CDT
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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) - A groundbreaking new series airs Saturday mornings on WBKO-ABC about the journey of those who have spent time behind bars, now starting over in society.

“Free Enterprise” showcases formerly incarcerated individuals who have started their own businesses after coming out of prison. They receive guidance from Brian Hamilton, an entrepreneur and philanthropist who has been teaching entrepreneurship in prisons for decades.

Hamilton’s passion for helping people get second chances began when he got involved with a prison ministry 25 years ago. “I met people in prison who were thinking about going out and getting a job, which we know is incredibly difficult...it’s hard to get a job, so as an entrepreneur I thought instead of getting a job, go create one.” That turned into Hamilton’s organization Inmates to Entrepreneurs, a program that teaches people with criminal records how to start and grow their own businesses. “How do we get people really actively deployed in our economy, in wealth creation, how can we get them a second chance?” The show centers around a person’s business idea then walks them through the process of getting their first customer and starting their own business.

“Free Enterprise” is hosted by Ryan Smith and airs Saturdays at 9:30 a.m. on WBKO-ABC.

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